Or, consider other cards for 50,000 more miles or points that transfer into United miles with additional flexibility for your everyday spending.
Reward nights start at 10,000 points. Free anniversary night (no points needed) good at any IHG hotel (Intercontinental, Crowne Plaza, more).
$1,000 toward travel or transfer to United, Southwest, and more.
Hawaiian Airlines First Class is one of the nicest ways to get to the Hawaiian islands.
It flies an all widebody fleet that puts the 737s you’ll see from Alaska, Delta, and United to shame, and is rolling out full lie flat seats in First Class.
Even its older seats are much more spacious than many domestic First Class seats.
Hawaiian’s mileage program uses the following award chart for flights do and from the Mainland.
You can pay as few as 20,000 miles one way in Coach and 40,000 miles one way in First Class, or 25,000 miles to upgrade to First Class.
At 40,000 miles one way or 80,000 miles round trip, an award in First Class isn’t a great deal, but with the 25% Amex bonus it starts to look more attractive.
With the bonus, you need to transfer only 64,000 points for a round trip Saver First Class award, or 32,000 points for a one way award, which is a good deal for Hawaiian’s big seats.
You can get SuperSaver Coach for 16,000 Amex points.
The catch is, when will you find Saver space?
Not often in First Class.
The 11 hour New York to Honolulu route almost never has seats for 40,000 miles in First Class, so be prepared to pay 80,000 miles each way, or 50,000 for an upgrade from a cash Coach ticket.
Even West Coast cities are tough, like Seattle to Honolulu, which rarely has space in First Class, but has good space in Coach for 20,000 miles.
Saver First Class for 40,000 miles isn’t impossible to find though.
If you’re willing to travel during the off season, like mid-November, and pick a second tier airport like Oakland, you’ll find plenty of flights at the Saver price.
Transfers from Amex are instant, so do your homework by setting up an account on HawaiianAirlines.com first. With award space so sparse, we’d only recommend a transfer if you have an award you can confirm on the spot.
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